The father of swimmer Chad Le Clos could not contain himself after his son won a gold medal by defeating the greatest ever Olympian.
Bert Le Clos paid an emotional live TV tribute to his “beautiful boy”, who beat Michael Phelps to the 200m butterfly title by five hundredths of a second.
The South African swimmer’s overjoyed father declared: “Unbelievable, unbelievable, unbelievable. I’ve never been so happy in my life.
“It’s something indescribable. What happened is like I died and went to heaven and whatever happens in my life now it’s plain sailing.
“Wow. Look at him. He’s beautiful. What a beautiful boy. Sorry, sorry. He’s unbelievable. He’s committed like you cannot believe. He’s the most down-to-earth beautiful boy you will ever meet in your life. Look at him, look at him. I love you. He’s crying like me.”
Mr Le Clos, 55, then realised he was on TV when he caught sight of himself in a BBC monitor. He pulled his shirt over his stomach, adding: “Oh my God, every time I see myself. Is this live? Unbelievable. Thanks Great Britain.”
BBC presenter Clare Balding had spotted him wiping away tears and grabbed him for an interview minutes after Le Clos, 20, surged past his boyhood hero in the last five metres to win South Africa’s second gold medal, breaking the national record in the process.
The interview was hailed on Twitter as the best moment of the Olympics so far.
England cricket captain Michael Vaughan tweeted: “Bert Le Clos. You’ve just made my night. Outstanding TV.”
Chad’s victory was cheered on at the aquatics centre by Princess Charlene of Monaco, a close family friend and ex-South African Olympic swimmer.
He said afterwards: “It’s a dream come true. Michael Phelps is an idol to me. I can’t believe I beat him in the final. It’s something I’ve gone over in my head a million times.”
His father later told the Standard: “Chad used to play football and is a Manchester United fan. But with his legs being a bit funny — you know, flat-footed — I knew we had to make a choice. We chose swimming, thank God.”
See the interview here:
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